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3 Keys to Buying the Right Ratchet Puller

A reliable ratchet puller can be the saving grace in an otherwise bad situation.
A reliable ratchet puller can be the saving grace in an otherwise bad situation. (Tekton/)

A ratchet puller, commonly referred to as a “come along,” is the outdoorsman’s second, third, or fourth hand. The force-multiplying effect of this easy-to-use tool allows one person to get far more done than would be humanly possible without it. They are great for pulling stumps, felling trees, tensioning fences, or even pulling your own vehicle out of a ditch when no one else is around. Carry a length of chain to anchor around a stationary object, hook the other end to virtually any object that needs a little persuading, and get things moving!

Weight Capacity

Before you buy, make sure a ratchet puller is rated for the tasks you might be asking it to do.
Before you buy, make sure a ratchet puller is rated for the tasks you might be asking it to do. (Amazon/)

Commercially available ratchet pullers generally range from about a one- to five-ton pulling capacity. Anything rated for two tons or more will handle most situations, right up to hauling a full-size pick-up truck back onto the road.

Pull Length

If you’re going to be tugging across long distances, make sure the ratchet puller has enough cable.
If you’re going to be tugging across long distances, make sure the ratchet puller has enough cable. (Amazon/)

A standard come along usually has only about a 7- to 10-foot pull length. That means your anchor point needs to be relatively close to your towing object, or another length of strap or cable will be necessary. A basic come along with a 30-foot length of braided steel cable stored in the truck is a powerful and versatile combination.

Long-Range Pulling

Rope ratchet pullers are great for dragging across long distances as long as the object isn’t heavier than the ratchet’s weight capacity.
Rope ratchet pullers are great for dragging across long distances as long as the object isn’t heavier than the ratchet’s weight capacity. (Amazon/)

For pulling power at a distance of up to 100 feet, a ratchet puller meant to work with a long rope can get the job done. Roper pullers generally have a lower weight capacity, unless you get into specialized synthetic ropes, such as Amsteel.

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